Boxing News

Sturm rejects mandatory defense

WBA middleweight champion Felix Sturm has declared in lieu of an oath before Hamburg District Court that under no circumstances will he take part in the mandatory title defence bout required by the WBA against the number two in the world rankings, Gennady Golovkin, and his legal representative in court has furthermore declared Sturm’s willingness to voluntarily lay down his WBA title, if necessary.

This follows an application to the court by Universum on 19 February 2010 for an injunction order to prevent Sturm from arranging or taking part in a fight against Golovkin without Universum’s involvement. Sturm had previously refused out of court to make a cease-and-desist declaration to this end. Sturm’s attorney for the proceedings had claimed in a written submission to the court on 15 February 2010 that defaulting on the fight would entail a loss of image and a huge loss of earnings for the boxer, as well as having irreparable effects on his sporting career. As Sturm’s declaration to the court yesterday makes it clear that the Sturm vs. Golovkin fight will not take place, Universum’s injunction petition has become groundless and has thus been withdrawn.

This does not affect the main proceedings also pending before Hamburg District Court in which Felix Sturm hopes to obtain a ruling that his exclusive contract with Universum, valid until November 2012, was effectively ended by his termination of it without notice on 4 August, 2009. Universum, meanwhile, filed a counterclaim to this on 28 January, 2010 to move the court to oblige Sturm to cooperate in the arrangement and execution of the boxing matches set up by Universum under the contract and to refrain from breaching the contract by negotiating and participating in autonomously-arranged boxing matches.

A decision on this matter is not expected for some months.

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